Everyone involved with Hatch makes a contribution that helps drive our mission. However, it must be said that some sacrifices are physically more arduous than others. Gareth Davies, a trustee of Hatch, undertook a gruelling nine-day challenge to cycle 1000 miles to end his year dedicated to raising money for Hatch. Gareth’s generosity was sparked by his passion to help others become self-supporting through enterprise. With a goal to raise a £1000, he had to raise the stakes and put himself through the gears, having to cycle on average more than 110 miles a day to battle his final challenge.
Gareth’s journey would begin on the 8th of September, setting off from Cornwall, England’s south-western tip, endeavouring to travel from Lands End to John O’Groats. The route is still renowned for being one of the most iconic long distance rides in the world. As Gareth recalls about his thoughts the night before, ”Trepidation is a word that really doesn’t start to do justice to what I was thinking about the next day’s experience – could I do it, what would it be like, would the pain be too much for my backside? Was I up to it? I tried to get some sleep ready for a 7am get-go, but in truth it was a like a 5 year-old waiting for Christmas morning. No sleep at all.”
Throughout the journey, Gareth’s experiences would vary from awe of the breathtaking landscapes, to the pendulum of human emotions. Cycling through Glen Coe and into the Shadow of Ben Nevis, as the group planned to travel from Hamilton to Fort William, proved to be the toughest day for Gareth as he said, “I was in a lot of pain with an Achilles tendon problem; my leg was taped up and I was swallowing painkillers.” It was through the pain that Gareth appreciated the importance of group camaraderie and working as a team as they took turns to ride first into the wind for the benefit of each other.
On the final day, Gareth recalls, “John O’Groats came up quite fast. It was only 100 miles that day, and the finish line springs out of nowhere. Turns out that the end of the UK is quite a discrete construction at the end of a road that looks like a farm driveway. We lined up so that we came across at the same moment, no one wanting to be “first”. My feelings were: surprise that the end was actually here; disbelief that I’d done it; elation that we’d made it; expectation of that first beer.” His magnanimous effort on the road culminated into a successful fundraising campaign, which lead to Gareth raising £1,021.88 – which was more than the target initially set.
Gareth would like to thank the overwhelming generosity of the people who donated, the support crew from Threshold sports and Deloitte who sponsored the event. Everyone at Hatch would like to thank Gareth for his incredible sacrifice and kindness to raise the important funds that allow us to carry on our work. Gareth, no doubt, has earned a long and restful break to recover from the blisters and muscle pain.
By Mohibur Rahman